The Innocence


A 6-year-old boy, while returning to home from the sea shore, was passing through a market with his 4-year-old sister. His sister stopped at a toy shop and started looking at toys displayed in and outside the shop. The boy asked her sister whether she needed anything. The girl showed him a doll using her finger.

The child picked up the doll and gave it to her sister like a responsible brother. She was overjoyed at his brother’s gesture. The child then came to the counter and asked the shopkeeper,
“How much is this doll worth?”

The shopkeeper was watching all this and was surprised to see the child’s mature behaviour. He was an old experienced person, who had seen many ups and downs of life. He affectionately asked the child,
“Tell me son, what can you give?”

The child took out all the seashells and oysters from his pocket, which he had picked up with his sister a while back from the sea shore, and gave to the shopkeeper. The shopkeeper picked only five out of those shells and returned the rest to the child. The child happily took back the shells in his pocket and went away gleefully with his sister.

A worker of that shop, who was watching all this, asked the owner, “Sir, you gave such an expensive doll in exchange for only 5 seashells?”

The shopowner said with a smile,
“For us it may be just shells, but for that 6-year-old kid, it’s quite valuable. At this age, he doesn’t know what money is. But when he will grow up, he will remember that he had bought a doll for his sister in exchange for seashells. Then he would definitely remember me, and realise that this world has no dearth of good people.

A person of reason and prudence may find loopholes in this story, as we are used to now in this materialistic world, but frankly enough, I was also one of those children, who used to collect seashells as if those were the real coins. In fact, in the ancient India, cowries (cowry is also a type of seashell) were used and accepted as coins.

This hobby of collection later became the essential part of my study, when I used to collect leaves and flowers for making herbarium and rocks and minerals during my geological excursions.

But here I’m talking of innocence that comes first naturally, wisdom and experience only thereafter. But the knowledge snatches innocence. William Godwin had said in this regard,
“No man knows the value of innocence and integrity, but he who has lost them.”

Coming back to the story, can the same boy go to a shop with seashells for shopping, once he comes to know that these shells are of no value. These shells are however being sold now as sovenirs that command handsome prices.

An innocent person is not stupid, he or she just thinks that everyone has a good heart.

Suppose the shopowner had refused and ridiculed the boy, his innocence would have shattered at that moment itself. But the shopkeeper helped increase the positivity in the child by a small gesture and in his way inspired him to become a good person.

Remember, an attitude of gratitude is a choice that springs from the soul.

–Kaushal Kishore

first two images from pinterest

34 Comments

  1. I love your today’s post, Kaushal, for many reasons. To add to your words of wisdom there is a quote from the ancient sage, Cicero: “Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues but the mother of
    all the others.”
    Also, I like to learn how much you and I have in common; I have been collecting shells all my life, and colorful leaves dried between pages of notebooks. Collecting rocks from all over the world is my passion. I hang crystals on the top of windows to create dancing around the walls and the ceiling rainbows.
    I love your statement that the innocence of children is of the greatest importance, and the thought that being treated with kindness creates a positive outlook on life when they grow up, believing that they are many good people around despite gloomy daily news.
    Thank you, Kaushal, for such a positive reminder that we must live with love in our hearts

    Joanna.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks a lot, Joanna for such a beautiful response. Yes, we have so many things in common, but there is one difference. You started collecting leaves, rocks etc as a hobby or passion, while I had to do it as a part of my college curriculum. Of course, curriculum was of my choice and I truly relished it. As for innocence, whenever I look at a small child, he reminds me of my own childhood days. It in itself gives positivity. Thank you for the quote that resonates well with me. Much appreciated!

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  2. KK, A beautiful post! I wondered as I watched the video, was the children’s display of friendship and affection for each other innate or were they following the loving example of the adults around them? Maybe both?

    My two youngest children are brother and sister. They came from Russia eating out of garbage cans and having been trained to pick pockets and beg. Yet, their affection for each other was touching. They always shared their food with each other and with us.

    I have always decorated my home with seashells, rocks, pine cones, and photos of my family. These things hold the valued memories of my life.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. I agree with you, Cheryl regarding observation on video, but what appealed me most was their embracing one another so innocently. As for your children, I often see this on streets, where elder sibling takes the responsibility of guardianship. This is natural instinct, I think.
      I’m so happy that you are also a fan of seashells, rocks etc. Thank you, Cheryl for sharing this information. There is a Rock Garden in Chandigarh, where sculptures have been made out of discarded rock pieces and recycled ceramics.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I appreciate your thought that kindness is a free gift that we should give to innocent children. Thanks so much 😊💖

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  3. What a poignant tale and what an invaluable lesson for all of us. I especially loved how you put “with an attitude of gratitude…” we should all keep that in mind 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  4. This was such a heartwarming story Kaushal Ji. Almost made me imagine that whole scene. Sometimes i feel Innocence comes so close to bravery that it almost surpasses courage, Its a blessing and we don’t know where that might land a human who carries it. I am going to remember this story Kaushal Ji. Much thanks.

    Narayan x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Narayan ji for such a lovely comment. You’re right, innocence is a blessing. I’m glad you liked the story. Deeply appreciated.

      Like

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